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Manchester waste authority levy up 14%

The Greater Manchester Waste Disposal Authority (GMWDA) has increased its waste levy by just over 14% for the next financial year at a level of £166.1m.

The levy, which will help fund £631m of investment facilities in Manchester as part of an 25-year PFI waste management contract, will rise 2.98% in 2014/15 and will be 70% of inflation for the next 20 years.

The 14.15% levy increase in 2013/14 will add around 2.6% to residents’ Council Tax Bill.

Cllr Neil Swannick (Lab), GMWDA chair, said he appreciated the rise was big, but insisted it was necessary to fund the vital infrastructure.

“Through the facilities, and our residents participation we are already diverting 57% away from landfill and we are working hard to increase diversion to 90%,” he said. “That means, if we achieve it, we would be saving around £29 million pounds a year.” 

The waste authority hit back at communities minister Eric Pickles earlier this month who blamed the “botched” PFI deal for driving up council tax. 

The £3.8bn contract with VLGM, a joint venture between Viridor and John Laing, is thought to be the largest waste deal in Europe.

Swannick said that the contract was signed with support from Defra, the Treasury and the nine partner councils.

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